Playable Ads: Let Your People Play

The more businesses try to promote their products and services, the more users are fed up with recurring and often annoying ads. In our article, we discover what makes playable ads warmly welcomed by users and how to create playable ads for best performance.


The era of consumerism is here, and it has brought the richest variety of products and services ever. The businesses struggle to reach greater audiences and to increase sales. One of the ways to do so is advertising.

The consumers, however, are bored with the ads. They do not want to receive ads anymore. The study shows that in the USA alone, 42% of the respondents were applying ad blockers in the first half of 2020, and this figure is expected to keep growing.

The only way to grab consumers’ attention is to provide the ads of a type that has not yet become a tedious one and requires greater users’ engagement in the ad consumption process. Playables are exactly the right option to choose.

What are playable ads?

Playable mobile ads or “playables” are fully interactive ads, as they contain all the major mobile gestures like touch, tap, flip or swipe, and enable brand communication through gamification.

Playables are mostly built in HTML5, which provides for:

  • Quick load
  • Immediate consumer engagement
  • Easy share via social media or email

Playable ads normally have three creative elements:

  1. Tutorial prompt
    The tutorial provides the instructions for the consumers on how to interact with the playable using visual hints.
  2. Interactive experience
    The game itself, developed following the interests of the target audience, the end goal of the interactive experience and the brand essence.
  3. End card
    The last element of a playable is displayed after the game is complete. This is the last chance for a call-to-action of any type: buy a product, download an app, receive a discount coupon, etc.

Playable Ads: Mechanics

How to create playable ads for the best customer acquisition performance?

People enjoy playing games. The number of gamers is constantly increasing: by 2023, this figure is forecasted to rise to over 3 billion worldwide.

To attract users’ attention, a game should stand out in a crowd, even if it is not a full-fledged video game, but a playable ad.

Below we’ve collected the top five playable ads best practices to create eye-catching and breathtaking ads.

  1. Stick to the right timing
    As it always happens with advertisements, you have only a few seconds to grab the users’ attention. Based on our experience, a good playable should not last longer than 30 seconds. Grab the essence of your product or game presentation to stick to the timing and not to overload the users with the information.
  2. Keep the instructions clear
    Show your users what they have to do to complete the playable clearly and understandably. The easiest way to guide them is to use a pointer hand and provide short explanations.
  3. Be simpler
    Don’t try to show every feature of the app or product you are advertising. Concentrate on one core element that would reflect the category of the app more than the app itself. Remember: if the users enjoy a simple version provided in a playable, there are chances they’d appreciate the full version as well.
  4. Let the users win
    Although failure may boost the desire to upload an app and try again, it is better to let your users win: a success, even in playable ads, is a positive motive to be back to your product. However, avoid making the game too easy: make your users feel that they had overcome a challenge and found out the key themselves.
  5. Promise a “new level” to the users
    Add a teaser promising a “new” or the “next” level right after the game in the ad is complete. This simple trick will encourage the users to download the full version of the game and to go on playing.

Playable Ads: Creation

Where users find playables

Playable ads are generally accessed in-app or through mobile web, and users interact with playables mostly within social media or mobile games.

Playables are flexible, light and engaging, which attracts the audiences and the marketers. Popular social media can’t miss an opportunity to work with them.

Facebook Playable Ads

According to the latest stat data, Facebook is the most popular social media platform worldwide with the audience surpassing 2.6 million users. Facebook is a trendsetter for the ads placed in social media. Understanding that playables are appealing to the users, not only does Facebook welcome this ad format but also suggest a guideline for the marketers who wish to deliver better users experience.

FB playable ads are available on Stories, Newsfeed, Audience Network Interstitial, and Audience Network Rewarded video. On mobile, they are usually presented as full screen, which provides an opportunity to interact with the playables directly in the feed.

Snapchat Playable Ads

Snapchat Ads are full-screen videos up to 10 seconds long. Snapchat users, however, always have an opportunity to swipe up any moment the video is playing to learn more about an app, to install it or to visit your company’s website.

Although Snapchat can’t boast the audience of Facebook, it remains a platform that attracts the attention of younger generations, who especially love playing games. Promotion of the gaming apps via playables on Snapchat is easy due to the specially created self-serve ads tool.

Playables Within Mobile Games

Placing playable ads in a mobile game seems to be the most logical thing to do: if users are already playing a game, they would wish to play another one.

Playable Ads for Mobile Games

To be displayed during the gaming process, a playable mobile ad for games must be approved by both:

  • Google Play Store/Apple App Store
  • The ad exchange (Google AdX, MoPub, etc.)

Playable Ads created by Ardormedia

Ardormedia has been dealing with playable ads for more than 7 years. We are sure that playables should not necessarily be used to promote mobile games only. Our experience shows that playables can be applied to the advertising campaigns of products and services of almost all the kinds. Some examples:

Another sphere promoted by our playables was education. We have created a playable to promote “Kids Academy” app—an educational game school for younger schoolchildren. As they prefer playing to studying, the whole educational process within the app is based on a game.

Our team has delivered a stylistically similar playable ad to attract children’s attention and to show them that learning with the help of a mobile device can be easy as ABC.

Wrapping Up

Although being relatively new, playable ads have already gained popularity among the users. This type of ads helps to promote mobile apps, products and services, driving conversions and grabbing the audiences.

Ardormedia possesses all the creativity necessary to provide you with the playables that convert. Visit our website and have a look at our portfolio to make sure we are professionals in playable ads creation.

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